Saturday, September 4, 2010

Matcha ice cream

I finally caved in and bought an ice cream maker. Yes, I know. Cheesecake and ice cream, what gluttony. I got it in two days from Amazon Prime, and just yesterday, I ripped opened the packaging and froze the freezer bowl. I know summer is coming to an end, but ice cream will help me get through winter by proxy of fatty insulation. Go figure.

There are only two flavors I ever get in ice cream - vanilla and dark chocolate. However, my absolute favorite ice cream flavor is green tea (matcha). Unfortunately, I don't think any store bought ice cream ever measures up to the original Japanese stuff. So naturally, when I decided to buy the ice cream maker, the first recipe I wanted to try was a green tea one!

It's strange how making your own ice cream can be so deeply satisfying. And oh my god, is this green tea ice cream heavenly. I love that I am able to control what goes into my ice cream (guar gum? urgh!), and that I can add as much green tea or sugar as I want. This recipe is from David Lebovitz's A Perfect Scoop, courtesy of Use Real Butter. I may have to go out and actually BUY the book now that I am part of the homemade ice cream fan club. And please, for goodness sake, use powdered green tea i.e. matcha. This does NOT work with steeped green tea.

Matcha (green tea) ice cream
Yields 1 quart

1 cup whole milk
3/4 cups sugar
Pinch of salt
6 egg yolks
2 cups heavy cream
4 tsp matcha

1. Warm the milk, sugar and salt in a saucepan.
2. Whisk the matcha and heavy cream together in a large bowl.
3. Whisk the eggs yolks slightly in a medium bowl. Continue whisking the eggs while slowly pouring in the warm milk mixture so as not to let the eggs curdle.
4. Return the egg-milk mixture to the saucepan and set over medium-low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until the mixture thickens (see Note (a))
5. When the custard has thicken, strain over a fine mesh into the heavy cream-green tea mix while whisking vigorously.
6. Whisk until all the green tea has dissolved (see Note (b),(c))
7. Allow the ice cream mixture to cool and then refrigerate for at least an hour.
8. Churn in ice cream maker according to manufacturer's directions. (see Note (d))

(a) The mixture is thick enough when it coats back of spoon i.e. it doesn't drip away quickly but is quite viscous. Make sure the eggs don't curdle!
(b) I find that it's quite hard to dissolve the matcha powder. The trick according to Harumi Kurihara is to use 1 tbsp of the warm milk mixture to dissolve the matcha powder, then add it to the heavy cream.
(c) For a smoother consistency, strain the final mixture again over a mesh before refrigeration.
(d) I have a Cuisinart ICE-21 which yields soft serve ice cream. To firm up the ice cream, freeze in pint/quart containers for about 3 hours. It comes out PERFECT.


Sini Manner Voice said...

ooooh, tis such a beautiful colour I might have to have a crack at it myself... having made up a batch of your chiu chow chilli oil - I trust you!!
In fact, I think you will be in charge of my winter kitchen activities... cz that tarty flan-y thing below looks yummy too - cheers!

jennifer said...

yes! i got an ice cream maker a couple months ago and have been wanting to make matcha ice cream. can't wait to try this recipe!